Thursday November 15 is America Recycles Day, a program dedicated to promoting and celebrating recycling in the United States. Recycling is a great way to reduce the amount of waste generated and thus to honor the Jewish principle of Baal Tashhit.
Why Recycling Is Important:
- Recycling saves energy, conserves natural resources and creates green jobs
- The national recycling rate of 34 percent annually saves the energy equivalent of nearly 229 million barrels of oil
- The national recycling rate of 34 percent annually avoids greenhouse gas emissions of the equivalent of removing more than 36 million cars from the road
Where and How to Recycle Non-Paper and Plastic Items: While curbside recycling is common in most areas for items such as paper, aluminum and certain types of plastic, there are many other items that can easily be recycled in your community.
- Rechargeable Batteries, Cell Phones and Audio Equipment—a number of local retailers will take these items to keep them out of landfills. Check with your local hardware store or chains such as Radio Shack. Also check out the website Earth911.com for recycling locations near you.
- Medical equipment—for medical equipment that you no longer need, a great resource in Saint Louis is the Saint Louis Health Equipment Lending Program (STL HELP). HELP will take your donated items, clean them and refurbish them and loan them to people in need whose insurance does not cover rental or purchase of such devices. Any items STL HELP can’t use will be donated to other agencies that can use them. Contact STL HELP at 314-567-4700 or go to www.stlhelp.org
- CFL Light bulbs—These items also can be brought to retailers in your community to be recycled safely. Home Depot has a national CFL Bulb Recycling Initiative, as do many other hardware store chains and locally owned hardware stores. Ameren Missouri also has a website that can direct you where to take bulbs that are no longer useable. (http://www.ameren.com/sites/aue/MyHome/ResEfficiency/Pages/EnergyEfficiencyLookup.aspx)
- Used gardening items—the Missouri Botanical Garden runs the most extensive public garden recycling program in the nation. Items that can be recycled include plastic garden pots, polystyrene cell packs and trays. Last year the plastic pot recycling program collected a record 140,000 pounds of horticultural waste. Collection sites include not only the Garden but a large number of additional locations throughout Saint Louis City and County. http://www.missouribotanicalgarden.org/gardens-gardening/gardening-in-br-st.-louis/plastic-pot-recycling.aspx